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a desire of the land took possession of them, and so the Athenians drove them out, without alleging any other pretence whatever.” But, as the Athenians say, they justly expelled them; for that the Pelasgians, while settled under Mount Hymettus, made incursions from thence, and committed the following injuries : For that their daughters and sons used constantly to go for water to the Nine Springs, because at that time neither they nor the other Greeks had domestic servants: and whenever the young women went there, the Pelasgians used, out of insolence and contempt, to offer violence to them; nor were they satisfied with doing this, but at last they were discovered in the very act of plotting to attack the city. They add that they themselves showed themselves so much better men than them in that, when it was in their power to put the Pelasgians to death, since they had found them plotting against them, they would not do so, but warned them to depart the country; and that they, accordingly, withdrawing, possessed themselves of other places, and among them of Lemnos. Hecatæus has given the former account, and the Athenians give the latter. But these Pelasgians, who then inhabited Lemnos, and desired to be revenged on the Athenians, being well acquainted with the festivals of the Athenians, stationed fifty-oared galleys and laid an ambuscade for the Athenian women, as they celebrated the festival of Diana in Brauron, and having carried many of them away from thence, they sailed off, and taking them to Lemnos, kept them as concubines. But when these women were fully supplied with children, they instructed their sons in the Attic language and the manners of the Athenians; they, therefore, would not hold any intercourse with the sons of the Pelasgian women, but if any one of their number was beaten by one of them they all immediately assisted, and revenged one another; moreover, these boys thought they had a right to govern the other boys, and proved far superior to them. But the Pelasgians, observing this, consulted together, and, on consideration, considerable alarm came over them as to what these boys would do when they were grown up, if they already determined to assist each other against the sons of their lawful wives, and even now endeavoured to rule over them. Thereupon they resolved to murder the children they had by the Attic women; and, accordingly, they did so, and, moreover, put their mothers to death. From this crime, and that which the women perpetrated before this, who with the assistance of Thoas, killed their own husbands, all enormous actions are wont to be called Lemnian throughout Greece. But when the Pelasgians had murdered their own children and women, neither did their land yield fruit, nor were their wives and flocks equally prolific as before; being, therefore, afflicted by famine and childlessness, they sent to Delphi to seek for some deliverance from their present distresses. But the Pythian bade them give such satisfaction to the Athenians as the Athenians themselves should impose. The Pelasgians, therefore, went to Athens, and professed themselves ready to give satisfaction for the whole injury. But the Athenians, having spread a couch in the Prytaneum in the handsomest way they were able, and having placed by it a table full of all sorts of good things, commanded the Pelasgians to surrender their country to them in such a condition. But the Pelasgians said, in answer, “When a ship shall perform the voyage in one day by the north wind from your country to ours, we will then deliver it up." This they said, supposing that it was impossible the thing should happen, because Attica lies far to the south of Lemnos. This took place at that time. But very many years after this, when the Chersonese in the Hellespont became subject to the Athenians, Miltiades, son of Cimon, at a time when the Etesian winds prevailed, having performed the voyage in a ship from Elæus, on the Hellespont, to Lemnos, required the Pelasgians to quit the island, reminding them of the oracle, which the Pelasgians expected could never be accomplished. The Hephæstians accordingly obeyed; but the Myrinæans, not acknowledging the Chersonese to be Attica, were besieged until they also surrendered. Thus the Athenians and Miltiades got possession of Lemnos.
THEN the news of the battle fought at Marathon
reached Darius, son of Hystaspes, who was before much exasperated with the Athenians on account
of the attack upon Sardis, he then became much more incensed, and was still more eager to prosecute the war against Greece. Having therefore immediately sent messengers to the several cities, he enjoined them to prepare an army, imposing on each a much greater number than they had furnished before, and ships, horses, corn, and transports. When these orders were proclaimed round about, Asia was thrown into agitation during the space of three years, the bravest men being enrolled and prepared for the purpose of invading Greece. But in the fourth year the Egyptians, who had been subdued by Cambyses, revolted from the Persians; whereupon Darius only became more eager to march against both. When Darius was preparing for his expeditions against Egypt and Athens, a violent dissension arose between his sons concerning the sovereignty; for by the customs of the Persians he was obliged to nominate his successor before he marched out on any expedition. Now Darius, even before he became king, had three sons born to him by his former wife, the daughter of Gobryas; and after his accession to the throne, four others by Atossa, daughter of Cyrus. Of the former, Artabazanes was the eldest; of those born afterward, Xerxes : and these two not being of the same mother, were at variance. Artabazanes urged that he was the eldest of all the sons, and that it was the established usage among all men that the eldest son should succeed to the sovereignty: on the other hand, Xerxes alleged that he was son of Atossa, daughter of Cyrus, and that it was Cyrus who had acquired freedom for the Persians. When Darius had not yet declared his opinion, at this very conjuncture Demaratus, son of Ariston, happened to come up to Susa, having been deprived of the kingly office at Sparta, and having imposed on himself a voluntary exile from
Lacedæmon. This man, having heard of the difference between the sons of Darius, went to Xerxes, as report says, and advised him to say, in addition to what he had already said, that he was born to Darius after he had become king, and was possessed of the empire of the Persians; whereas Artabazanes was born to Darius while he was yet a private person; wherefore it was not reasonable or just that any other should possess that dignity in preference to himself, since in Sparta also, Demaratus continued to suggest, this custom prevailed, that if some children were born before their father became king, and one was born subsequently when he had now come to the throne, this last-born son should succeed to the kingdom. Xerxes having availed himself of the suggestion of Demaratus, Darius, acknowledging that he said what was just, declared him king. But it appears to me that even without this suggestion Xerxes would have been made king; for Atossa had unbounded influence. Darius, having appointed Xerxes to be king over the Persians, prepared to march. However, after these things, and in the year after the revolt of Egypt, it happened that Darius himself, while he was making preparations, died, having reigned thirty-six years in all; nor was he able to avenge himself either on the Egyptians, who had revolted, or on the Athenians. When Darius was dead, the kingdom devolved on his son Xerxes.
Xerxes, however, was at first by no means inclined to make war against Greece, but he levied forces for the reduction of Egypt. But Mardonius, son of Gobryas, who was cousin to Xerxes, and son of Darius's sister, being present, and having the greatest influence with him of all the Persians, constantly held the following language, saying: “Sir, it is not right that the Athenians, having already done much mischief to the Persians, should go unpunished for what they have done. However, for the present, finish the enterprise you have in hand; and when you have quelled the insolence of Egypt, lead your army against Athens; that you may acquire a good reputation among men, and any one for the future may be cautious of marching against your territory." This language was used by him for the purposes of revenge, but he frequently made the following addition to it, that Europe was a very beautiful country, and produced all kinds of cultivated trees, and was very fertile, and worthy to be possessed by the king alone of all mortals. He spake thus, because he was desirous of new enterprises, and wished to be himself governor of Greece: in time he effected his purpose, and persuaded Xerxes to do as he advised; for other things happening favourably assisted him in persuading Xerxes. In the first place, messengers coming from Thessaly on the part of the Aleuadæ, invited the king, with earnest importunity, to invade Greece: these Aleuadæ were Kings of Thessaly. And in the next place, those of the Pisistratidæ, who had gone up to Susa, holding the same language as the Aleuadæ, still more eagerly pressed him, having with them Onomacritus, an Athenian, a soothsayer and dispenser of the oracles of Musæus. For they went up to Susa, having first reconciled their former enmity with him. For Onomacritus had been banished from Athens by Hipparchus, son of Pisistratus, having been detected by Lasus the Hermionian in the very act of interpolating among the oracles of Musæus, one importing that the islands lying off Lemnos would disappear beneath the sea : wherefore Hipparchus banished him, although he had before been very familiar with him. But at that time having gone up with them, whenever he came into the presence of the king, as the Pisistratidæ spoke of him in very high terms, he recited some of the oracles; if, however, there were among them any that portended misfortune to the barbarians, of these he made no mention; but selecting such as were most favourable, he said it was fated that the Hellespont should be bridged over by a Persian, describing the march. Thus he continually assailed! the king, rehearsing oracles, as did the Pisistratidæ and Aleuadæ, by declaring their opinions. When Xerxes was persuaded to make war against Greece, he then, in the second year after the death of Darius, first made an expedition against those who had revolted; and, having subdued them and reduced all Egypt to a worse state of servitude than it had been under Darius, he committed the government to Achæmenes, his own brother, and son of Darius. Some time after, Inarus, son of Psammitichus, a Libyan, slew Achæmenes, to whom the government of Egypt was committed.
Xerxes, after the reduction of Egypt, when he was about to take in hand the expedition against Athens, convoked an assembly of the principal Persians, that he might both hear their opinions and himself make known his intentions before them all. When they were assembled Xerxes addressed them as follows: “Men of Persia, I shall not be the first to introduce this custom among you, but shall adopt it, having received it from my forefathers. For, as I learn from older men, we have never remained inactive since we wrested the sovereign power from the Medes, and Cyrus overthrew Astyages: but the deity thus leads the way, and to us who follow
'Or "conducted himself.”